Booked for BRICS: busy Thursday for Manmohan

March 28th, 2012 - 3:17 pm ICT by IANS  

Manmohan Singh New Delhi, March 28 (IANS) Barely 30 hours after returning from the Nuclear Security Summit in Seoul, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh will Thursday hold a slew of high-profile diplomatic engagements that includes chairing the BRICS summit followed by three back-to-back bilaterals with the leaders of Russia, China and South Africa.

Manmohan Singh begins Thursday morning with a group photo at the Taj Palace hotel with the presidents of the five top emerging economies of BRICS that includes Dmitry Medvedev of Russia, Hu Jintao of China, Dilma Rousseff of Brazil and Jacob Zuma of South Africa.

The economist prime minister then settles down for a restricted meeting with the leaders of BRICS countries for one-and-a-half hours followed by a plenary session where he is expected to pitch for reforming institutions of global governance, including the UN, the IMF and the World Bank.

After a lunch with leaders of BRICS countries, he heads for three back-to-back bilateral meetings starting with Medvedev, followed by the presidents of China and South Africa.

The meetings with Hu and Medvedev will be a farewell of sorts to the two leaders.

Medvedev will make way for Vladimir Putin who takes charge of the Russian presidency in May. Hu is expected to make way for Xi Jinping in a planned leadership succession in China later this year.

On Friday, Manmohan Singh will hold talks with the Brazilian president who will be staying for a two-day state visit that ends Saturday.

Manmohan Singh returned from the Nuclear Security Summit in Seoul Tuesday night after a four-day visit.

Besides participating in the multilateral summit, he held nearly half a dozen bilaterals. The 77-year-old prime minister, it seems, will now get some time by himself only over the weekend.

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